This January was quiet on the durian front. In contrast to December's deaths, health warnings, squabbles between stall owners, and all-you-can-eat buffets all across Southeast Asia, this month's biggest durian news is of havoc caused in an unlikely country: Canada.
Yes, a bank in Malaysia hosted a big durian party for its head honchos (yawn), and some Indonesian official got busted for hiding 1.5 billion rupiah in bribes inside of a durian box ($153,600 US), inspiring what may be my favorite quote of 2013 (so far): “There will be no more durian boxes if we limit the use of cash payments.”
But the real news belongs to Richmond, British Colombia. It's yet another case of gas leak evacuation turns "oops it's some weird Asian fruit," but on a larger scale.
The Vancouver Sun reported on January 20th that a 22,000-square-foot shopping center was evacuated after customers complained of a strange, sulfurous odor wafting through the mall. The fire department was called and crews scoured the premises looking for dangerous gas leaks while shopping Canucks shivered in the parking lot.
The source of the odor was traced to Osaka Supermarket, an Asian chain grocer selling fresh durian in the produce department. According to the store, they had stocked fresh durian many times without incident. The sad outcome of the event is that Osaka will probably not be offering fresh durian in the future, although they will continue to sell it frozen.
You can read the original article here: Notoriously Stinky Fruit Evacuates Richmond Mall
What's in your durian box?